You do not need to be a writer to know when you're reading a well-written article. Even if you don't know the first thing about putting paragraphs together, you can recognize smooth transitions, evocative language, and unique points of view. If you are an entrepreneur, though, you must understand what it takes to produce excellent copy, the kind of writing that goes above and beyond in providing what people want to know. The best content allows you to earn people's trust, which leads to shares, backlinks, and referrals.
Trust in a brand's content is just as important as trust in the brand's employees. For many people, badly-written content leaves a negative impression. Content also informs people's impression of your brand's personality. If you want to position yourself as a youthful, fun-loving brand, your content should reflect that vibrance and playfulness. Similarly, if you want to project a buttoned-up image, your writing should evoke tradition, knowledge, and even prestige.
Even if you're delegating the writing to an employee or sourcing it out to an independent contractor, you should know how to appraise written works because others' impression of your brand depends on it. Here are things you should look at when evaluating blog posts for quality.
Keywords are there to optimize your posts. They are supposed to provide value while signaling to search engines that you have content relevant to a particular topic or industry. If you use too many keywords, though, Google will flag your content as untrustworthy. Too many keywords will also turn off human readers; too many instances of the same phrase sounds stilted when you read it.
As a result, your pageviews could go down, bringing with it your conversion rate and SERP rankings. Today, search engines do not need to see the exact phrase you're targeting to determine that you're targeting that keyword. Algorithms also use latent semantic indexing today, which means it uses the context to provide more clues about the text.
Compel visitors to do more on your website. Besides ensuring you have well-written content, you should also have a call-to-action or a CTA. The kind of CTA you have will depend on the result you want to see. If you want people to try out your software, your promotional material should say "schedule a free demo of [your app or software" towards the end of the text.
When you're composing a CTA, you need empathy. What would make people want to do something? How can you convince people to sign up for the newsletter, check your catalog, or sign up for a trial subscription to your service? Writing a CTA is an art form in itself. For example, it's not enough to direct people to your catalog. Instead, give them a discount code to use at checkout or provide a special first-purchase promo to provide a greater incentive for them.
Also, note that your content should be 80 percent informative and 20 percent persuasive. It's best to put your CTA towards the end of the promotional material. Don't be too pushy with your products. If you are, people will not want to check them out, discount or no discount.
Referencing another website's content means needing to hyperlink back to it. It is only right to give credit for people's ideas, and you'd want them to extend the same courtesy to you. Even if you're trying to keep traffic to your website, you should still link to others' sites. One way to provide others with the backlinks they deserve while keeping traffic to your website is by choosing the Open In New Tab option on your website's content management system. Besides, citations could help you get backlinks to your site. The people you quote could return the favor with a link or a mention, opening their audience to you.
Evocative writing stirs something in the reader. It inspires them, enrages them, makes them think, or otherwise gets them out of their daily routine and into feeling. If your prospective readers can scroll past your articles on their newsfeed, these posts' writers have not done enough to provide emotional impact. When you're evaluating an article or ad copy, ask yourself what others might find interesting about it.
Writing that stirs emotions is also more shareable. People tend to share posts that mirror their values or talk about causes and events close to their hearts. If you know your audience very well, you'll know what topics they cannot stop talking about or what issues they're willing to discuss.
People have only so many hours in a day, and they would rather spend it on things that matter. As such, you have to promise a great read from the jump. The title and the introductory paragraph are the most critical parts of an online article since people use them to decide whether they will skip the rest of a post. A good intro provides a background to the rest of the piece and delivers a promise that people will care to see fulfilled.
Your website content should provide people with new and relevant information through your posts. Even if you delegate blog posts to a staffer or have a contractor handling them, you should still know how to examine an article for its quality. If not, you might end up hurting your SERP rankings. People go online to find specific answers to their queries, and if you can provide those answers, they will keep coming back to your website for more.
Refine your content strategy from start to finish when you partner with Ranked. We provide affordable, high-quality SEO solutions for companies who want to build their online presence in the long term. We provide services to more than 2,500 SMEs and agencies worldwide; get in touch with our team to learn more or activate your account today!